Sunday, March 22, 2009

Finally... work in progress

In between a bunch of social engagements this weekend I have managed a few moments at the bench. Although I didn't get anywhere near as much done as I would have liked (or had planned), a little progress is better than none at all.

This week I am working on a bird pendant to match my bird earrings and white bird ring. I had already cut out the bird a few weeks ago, this weekend I wanted to add the bail and finish it off and then complete another piece that I have in the pipeline.

I have decided to hang the bird from a short length of chain to give it a little movement. I have started by creating a bed for the chain to be attached.

I have coated the piece in flambe (a mixture or borax, boric acid and metho) to protect from fire scale. The flambe is activated by burning away the metho.

I use two coats of flambe front and back, then I apply flux to the area that will be soldered.

Next I attached the chain by soldering the half jumpring in the countersunk beds I created earlier.

The result is rather icky looking (for now), but the chain is attached. I just have to make and attach the bail to the top.

But for now, into the pickle to get rid of the gunk.

Unfortunately that is as much as I got done this weekend. I did however have a lovely weekend with family and friends and the Melbourne weather was just perfect... Hopefully I will have some completed pieces next weekend.


  1. I agree, I am very fascinated with the process!

  2. Cool post! I'm really interested to learn silversmithing, but me and chemicals don't mix, so I'm a little scared of what might happen!

  3. Glad you all enjoyed it, my hubby is always fascinated with the process too.

    Tiff, I am a super-clutz but have survived so far ;) Mind you when I set up my micro torch and lit it for the first time my hubby stood way back in case I blew myself up!

  4. I love your step-by-step entry! I'm a beginner metalsmith and have so many issues with soldering (flame, firescale, etc), but seeing people do it with such ease makes me keep persevering.

    I've actually just downloaded a list of green alternatives to normal chemicals used in jewellery making. If you like, I can email it to you. The toxicity of jewellery making is a constant bother to me - good to know there's other stuff out there.

  5. Haha, I don't think I'd be allowed to play with a torch! He doesn't even like me using the big knives!

    Btw, I have done a little feature of your "spearmint swirl" ring in my Wishlist Wednesday post :) It's totally gorgeous! (but I think it's too small for me)